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Real Time Simulation for Safer vascular Stenting

Vascular stenting is an invasive procedure for the treatment of occlusive vascular diseases; a small wire mesh tube called a stent is permanently placed in the artery or vein to help it remain open. The procedure is called angioplasty. Originally developed to treat sever occlusions of coronary arteries, thanks to its good results, stenting found an expanding indication also for the treatment of occlusions in peripheral arteries. Around 20% of the population over 60 years old have peripheral arterial disease, and in a fifth of them symptoms can become severe and progressive, causing major lifestyle limitation; in many of these cases a stent can solve the problem effectively and with moderate risk for the patient.

As common for many other implantable devices, the expansion of the indication is also producing new complications. In particular, the risk of stent rupture, which in coronaries is near to zero, is becoming an increasing source of concerns for devices placed in peripheral arteries.

The variability of the incidence of this complication, that in some recent clinical studies affect 30% of the patients, suggest that problem is not only due to the design of the device, but also to factors related to the patient functional anatomy and lifestyle, and to the surgical procedure.

The RT3S project aim to develop and validate a sophisticated patient-specific, probabilistic model of the fatigue-fracture of a stent, integrated in a computer-aided surgery planning application, implemented to run in real-time during the surgical planning, so as to provide advice of the risk of stent rupture while the surgeon is planning the operation. The real time software library, easy embeddable in any existing application, will make possible to include the assessment of risk for stent fracture in all software solutions for computer-aided planning, training and intervention of peripheral vascular angioplasty procedures.


• Politecnico di Milano (Italy)
• SCS Srl (Italy)
• University of Bedfordshire (UK)
• Invatec CardioVascular SpA (Italy)
• Ansys France SAS (France)
• The University of Sheffield (UK)
• Technical University of Crete (Greece)
• Auxiliar Servicios Bancarios S.L. Auseba (Spain)
• Gklompo Technologiki Pliroforiki Anonymi Etaireia (Greece)


Project financed by the European Commission

Total cost: € 4,881,635
EC funding: € 3,500,000
Instrument: STREP
Project Identifier: FP7-2009-ICT-4-248801


Starting date: 01/01/2011
End date: 31/12/2013

Head of the project at Cineca 


Project co-ordinator: Politecnico di Milano
Contact person: Renata Guarneri
Per il Cineca: Debora Testi